After the Asian economic crisis, the economics of Republic of Korea recovered rapidly with rising business and consumer confidence. Economic policy in 2002 was aimed at boosting investor confidence through transparent and consistent restructuring. Many manufacturers and traders are longing for the chance to get their products into Korea Market.
For the import regulation, the former government-supervised type approval system was replaced by a new safety certification system overseen by private organizations. The Electric Appliance Safety Control Act was amended (Act 6019, proclaimed on September 7, 1999) to enhance safety control regarding the manufacture and use of electrical appliances and to harmonize safety requirements with international standards. This is to protect the consumers from electric hazards by contemplating about the practicality of the safety administration of the electrical products, to deal with the international era effectively by advancing the safety administration system of the electrical products such as the method of safety standards and procedures of the electrical products, and to help with the difficulty of exporting for the small to medium sized companies. This Electric Appliance Safety Control Act also facilitated the implementation of mutual recognition agreements on conformity assessment.
The Korean authority initiated a new KC scheme in 2009 for all electronic and electrical products. Those products must fulfill stipulated safety requirement, electromagnetic compatibility testing, and energy efficiency testing to obtain the ¡®KC Mark¡¯. Under the scheme, electronic and electrical products are categorized into Type 1, Type 2 and Type 3 products.
Type 1 products involve a total of 53 devices, e.g. home appliances and electrical devices, those are considered as posing comparatively more danger to consumers. Besides meeting safety standards, factory inspection and surveillance program are required.
Type 2 products, there is a self-regulatory safety confirmation scheme for those considered less dangerous to consumers, e.g. A/V, ITE device in total 93 devices. Safety testing is required without factory inspection, and with a validation period of 5 years.
Type 3 products, there is a supplier DoC scheme which requires self-testing and verification, covering a total of 33 devices such as partial A/V products. Safety testing is required either by in-house testing or third-party testing without factory inspection.
Self-Regulatory Safety Confirmation
(in-house or 3rd party)
|Certification/Registration||By Certification Body||By Certification Body||No|
(per each 3-year and need to perform in Korea locally)
Safety certification shall be subject to an ¡®initial factory inspection¡¯ according to Article 6 (Issuance of electric appliance safety certificate) of the Enforcement Rules of Electrical Appliances Safety Control Act if electric appliances are subject to Article 3 (safety certification) and Article 15 (safety certification other than electrical appliances applied to safety certification) of the said Act. Safety certified electric appliances¡¯ manufacturers are subject to regular inspection once or more annually at factory sites according to Article 4 (regular inspection & self inspection) after acquisition of safety certificates.